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Eight tips for safer scooter rides

Over the past few years, several companies have introduced electric scooters to urban streets. And while this trend may be a fun way to mix up your commute or lunch break, according to UCLA Health, using scooters safely requires some degree of finesse.

If you’ve been tempted to try your hand at scootering, please read these important safety tips from Dr. Tarak Trivedi, who’s treated many scooter-related injuries at UCLA Health’s Westwood campus.

Eight tips for safer scooter rides

  1. Always wear a helmet. Head injuries are more common than you think! Prepare for your scooter ride in advance by bringing a helmet with you, as most companies do not provide one.
  2. Assess the scooter. Before each time you ride, test the brakes, make sure the steering handle is stable and ensure that the baseboard is not cracked.
  3. Use both hands at all times. Losing control is much easier when you ride with only one hand.
  4. Follow the rules. Follow the laws of the road, obey traffic signals, use bike lanes and assume that drivers will not see you until you have established eye contact.
  5. Keep your eyes on the road. Monitor the road ahead of you at all times to avoid riding over potholes or other obstacles. It’s easy for a scooter’s small wheels to get caught in a moderately sized pothole.
  6. Avoid riding downhill on steep hills. Steep grades may make your scooter difficult to control. If a hill is unavoidable, make sure to engage the brakes the whole way down.
  7. Say no to scootering on rainy days. Avoid riding if roads are wet, as scooters are more likely to slip on the pavement.
  8. Be conscientious about parking. After riding, park your scooter out of the path of pedestrian traffic. People with disabilities have tripped over scooters left in the middle of the sidewalk and have been injured.
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